IIT-JEE 2013 witnessed a whopping 1.5 million students competing to get in the top 1% which enters the premier engineering institutes of the country. Lately, MOOC (Massive Open Online Courses) have been the topic of discussion around the globe but the Indian education industry is still far away from shifting its base to online in an overnight.Amidst all this, when three of the 3rd year students at IIT-Bombay started Plancess EduSolutions Pvt. Ltd. 2 years back, they had put a huge bet on the booming Indian online education industry. 30 months down the line, there’s no reason why the co-founders Nitesh Salvi, Vivek Gupta & Mirik Gogri should be disappointed over their bet. Currently, the test preparation industry in India is more than $1.7 billion and growing at a healthy 15-20 % YoY (CLSA Report on Indian Education Sector).
Triggered by the unavailability of lectures to study for a topic for a quiz in his 3rd year of college, Nitesh along with the two co-founders recorded over 330 hrs of production of lectures on preparatory topics for IIT-JEE by AIR 1-100 (2009) in an year’s time. “To begin with we started with DVD model because of absence of high-speed internet connections but now we have online streaming of all the recorded lectures. We will be soon launching the eBooks for IIT-JEE preparation as well” said Nitesh.
Based out of an office in Mulund (Mumbai), Plancess is now 35 members strong. All three co-founders hail from IIT-Bombay 2009 batch. Raghav Singhania, newly appointed COO mentioned, “The core competency of the company lies in the content as it comes directly from horse’s mouth, the top 100 IIT-JEE rank holders and is 70-80% cheaper than the available options in the market today.” Though one can find some demo lectures on the website from IITians other than the AIR1-100, but the bigger concern will remain on the content front as there’s no academician on the team yet.
Commenting on the recently received funding and company’s revenues, Nitesh said “We can’t disclose the investor’s name yet but over INR 6 crore of fresh funds have been injected for the year 2013-14. Majority of these will be used for the team expansion and promotional (and awareness) activities. We are targeting INR 1.5-2 crore of revenue for the current fiscal year.” Plancess is already in talks with few schools and coaching institutes to offer a B2B solution to them.
Now that a tried and tested model is already in place, Plancess eyes an expansion towards becoming content and technology provider company for all exams in India. Test preparation market is growing at more than twice the rate of India's GDP growth, and looks like will be traversing a long way.
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